Timeform Preview – Sydney Cup
The 2021 Sydney Cup lacks for star power but it certainly throws up an interesting betting heat with a clash of formlines. The Manion Cup on one hand and the Tancred on the other.
There is no doubt that the Tancred took more winning than the Manion Cup but the winner, Sir Dragonet , goes to the QEII instead and leaves the form to be represented by those that were well beaten by him.
She's Ideel and Miami Bound filled the placings there and while neither were a match for Sir Dragonet they both put up strong-looking Sydney Cup trials and, with Timeform ratings of 114 and 113 respectively, both represent terrific winning chances back against the handicapper.
She's Ideel posted a career best effort in the Tancred and from the minimum here that leaves her looking the horse to beat – if she can repeat.
That is the task ahead of her. She has stayed as far as 2600m and looks likely to see out the longer trip.
What she lacks that Miami Bound has is a bank of ratings at that peak level. Miami Bound is an Oaks winner and a Moonee Valley Cup winner – running to that 113 peak on those occasions as well as in the Tancred.
She has failed to fire in two tries over this trip, and that tempers enthusiasm somewhat, but both could be excused easily enough and she has looked on track for this race all campaign.
Southern France warmed up late on in the Tancred and finds himself well fancied getting out to two miles for the first time since finishing down the track in the 2019 Melbourne Cup.
Form in the UK around topline stayers such as Kew Gardens and Stradivarius is good enough to win this – comfortably so.
He has had just four runs in 18 months and, despite that little bit of promise last time, none of those efforts have been anywhere near his best form. Backing him here takes a bit of a leap of faith but he is certainly of interest.
Southern France's form overseas leaves Favorite Moon's for dead, but he gives that one weight and Favorite Moon hits the Sydney Cup on the rise.
He won the Manion Cup well and looks sure to come on for that outing but the prospect of quicker ground wouldn't be music to his ears. That is not to say that he can't perform on top of the ground but all his form to this point has been on soft tracks and there is little doubt that he was sent to Sydney with a wet autumn in mind.
Realm Of Flowers ran a cracker behind him in the Manion Cup and now finds herself very well fancied to turn the tables out to two miles.
That Manion run was the best of her career to date, bettering her runner up effort in the Sandown Cup when she thrived on the longer trip at her only other attempt.
She had Miami Bound in behind her that day though the betting made Miami Bound, who was coming off a couple of tough outings, the better of the two and there is little doubt that Miami Bound has better performances to her name than what we have seen from Realm Of Flowers as yet.
Timeform Preview - Queen Elizabeth Stakes
Lining up against each other for the fourth time, the ledger reads 2:1 to Addeybb though the momentum is with Verry Elleegant having won the Ranvet Stakes last start.
Addeybb is rated 129 by Timeform and is one of the best in the world while our own star Verry Elleegant is rated 123.
After her mares' allowance, there is only two pounds between them and with the drying track she looks to have the edge.
Addeybb beat her by close to three lengths in this race last year, though Verry Elleegant has never been better and should be right at her top fourth up.
Chris Waller is the master at setting his horses for their Grand Final and you can be confident Verry Elleegant is going to produce a peak performance.
That being the case Addeybb will have to be at his best and while he is expected to improve second up, the firmer track is the query.
When assessing his career best performances they have come on rain-affected tracks, a thought echoed by his stable.
The blinkers go on for the first time in a bid to sharpen him up, though does that show they feel he is vulnerable? We'll have to wait and see.
The Kris Lees trained Mugatoo wasn't disgraced with the topweight in the Doncaster last weekend and shapes as a solid chance on the quick back up.
Rated 124 by Timeform, he lacks the class of the first two, but is a rock solid conveyance and if either are off their game, he shouldn't be far away.
The Maher and Eustace trained Sir Dragonet returned to the winner's stall in the Tancred Stakes last start though this is a complete different ball game.
He should run well and a true staying test would suit him, though he is likely to find them too sharp.
Timeform Preview - ATC Oaks
The David Payne trained Montefilia brings different form into the ATC Oaks and looks hard to beat.
Sent out favourite in the Australian Derby last weekend, she wasn't disgraced when finishing fourth behind Explosive Jack.
While hard to be too definitive as the track overall raced fair she did appear to be in the worst ground on the inside.
This has always been the plan to back her up off the Derby and she should be right at her top fourth up.
When assessing Timeform ratings there is nothing between the main market hopes all within a pound of each other - Montefilia - 114, Hungry Heart - 113 and Harmony Rose - 112.
Hungry Heart gave favourite Harmony Rose a sizable start on straightening and while the perceived bias was against, after assessing the race sectionals she was the beneficiary of a fast tempo.
Harmony Rose simply went too quick in front and as a result was left a sitting shot late.
The week delay also probably didn't help Harmony Rose as went into the Vinery with four weeks between runs as opposed to the originally scheduled three.
Hungry Heart was one of few horses on the day to make ground at Rosehill out-wide and while the tempo did suit, she still had to go out and do it.
Waller first won the Vinery Stud Stakes with Verry Elleegant in 2019 before she went on to complete the Vinery Stud Stakes/ATC Oaks double.
Since 2000, three fillies have completed the double – Verry Elleegant (2019), Heavenly Glow (2008) and Serenade Rose (2006).
Harmony Rose should lead on Saturday and if allowed to roll along at a more even tempo she is sure to take some running down.
Hungry Heart will again be spotting her a big start, but should be strong late.
New Zealand visitor Amarelinha is the 'X' factor in the race having won the NZ Oaks last start.
Rated 108 by Timeform she does have to build on that form, but gives every indication that she can with Opie Bosson making the trip over to ride.